tv This Hour With Berman and Michaela CNN February 21, 2014 8:00am-9:01am PST
has sparked a white hot debate. is it freedom of religion or the freedom to discriminate against gays. colorado swimming in cash. are we headed towards state governments running on pot? and there is something shocking about this man. not that his beard is pink but why his beard is pink. it's guaranteed to make you love
him. ♪ hello there, everyone. i'm john berman. >> and i'm michaela pereira. we're learning more about the shoe bombing threat. the bomb-maker is believed to be making on a bomb that would pass airline screening. homeland security has asked people to watch for attempts to hide bombs in shoes. and in west virginia, people are wondering if their water is safe to drink. experts are wondering just how dangerous the chemical in their water is. no one seems to know right now. what's happening at this point is being called unprecedented. >> we're expecting storms along the eastern seaboard. we just got word that d.c. is
under a tornado watch until 5:00 this afternoon. a breakthrough in the ukrainian protest. the president and opposition leaders have agreed to a deal. that includes less power for the president and constitutional reform. now, in return, protesters must withdraw from the streets and turn in any weapons within 24 hours. in sochi, team usa is taking on men's hockey. this is a semifinal with bragging rights on the line with an unbelievable win from canada yesterday. >> we're not talking about bragging rights on our desk but in north america. we have something to tell you. blur your eyes. we're talking men's curling. canada went up against great britain for the gold. and the winner is -- john, can you say it? >> it is, in fact, canada. sorry, queen elizabeth, great britain did not win.
canada is just killing it right now. let's look at the medal board as it stands. there is the united states and america that lead with 25 medals. eight of them gold, then russia with 23, canada and the netherlands are tied with 22, then norway and germany. >> we have to talk about the big story out of the olympics at this hour. figure skating fans, even some competitors, are saying something stinks in sochi, mainly the judges. russia's adelina sotnikova was the winner of the gold. many wonder if she benefited from home cooking. >> one judge was banned from judging for a year. he was busted for trying to fix an ice dancing competition in japan. another judge is married to a russian figure skating official. i honestly don't think that's the biggest problem with the judging. i think it's all a mess. andy is joining us to talk about this. >> think about this, a guy who
was busted for cheated is allowed to judge this year's skating competition. so many people are outraged about this that change.org, the website where you can talk about things, they are trying to get if changed. yuna kim, the defending gold medalist should have gotten gold and she got silver. the ukrainian judge caught for cheating, he was not the only controversy. the russian judge is married to the head of the russian skating federation. so it's these questionable things allowed to happen. >> one of the american skaters said, i didn't fall, i had a flawless routine. she, the one who won the gold, stumbled. >> the russian skater fell twice. ashley wagner fell not once and got seventh. the judges are anonymous. we get two scores lumped
together. we don't know who scored what and ashley wagner has said this has got to stop. we've got to get rid of the anonymous judging. >> the judging changed in 2002 after the blowup in salt lake city. they made the judging anonymous and then they started scoring each individual move in a different way, giving it points. what people are saying is that adelina sotnikova had a more complicated routine. some people are saying it was just athleticism. the sport is losing popularity in droves now. >> in the ioc, they are trying to hide behind -- >> what are they saying? >> nothing is wrong. we're not going to do anything about this unless a formal complaint is made. as of now, a formal complaint has not been made. kostner got third for italy. >> it's a reality when we think about it. we know that they see numbers
dwindling in terms of -- >> the fans are tried and true. are we getting more fans and does it compromise the future of the sport? >> that's exactly what ashley wagner was saying. we're losing fans because of this judging. we need to hold these people accountable or we're going to start losing fans because people will think it's rigged from the beginning. >> doesn't the olympics risk losing fans because of this, too? >> anything that is subjective, there is no finish line, there's no time. especially when you have so many judges with a questionable path. >> they've got to clean up their act right now. it's not just me. >> andy scholes, appreciate it. under armour's ceo is defending the spe defending speed skating outfits. many were saying that it slowed them down. >> the costume change hasn't really helped. it has been goose eggs for u.s. speed skaters in sochi.
ceo kevin plank is coming out swinging saying that his company was the victim of a witch hunt. >> there are no hard feelings, however. why? well, under armour has signed on to suit up team usa for the next eight years. >> i'm curious what the athletes have to say. >> i don't think they are going to have the events in the back. that's my prediction. also ahead at this hour, arizona lawmakers pass a bill that critics say violates human rights. they say it could allow stores to ban gays. but they question, is this religious freedom or discrimination? with at&t's new pricing for families you get 4 lines on at&t's network... including unlimited talk... unlimited text... and 10 gigs of data to share.
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freedom of religion or discrimination against gays? a heated battle in the arizona legislature ended with the passing of a bill that would allow religious beliefs as a defense against discrimination lawsuits. opponents say it would allow businesses, like restaurants, to deny gays service. >> the question is, does that mean you could ban gays or ban anyone as long as you say it's against your religious beliefs? joining us now to talk about this is the head of the group behind the bill. that's the center for arizona policy action. we're also joined by robert boston for separation of church and state. kathy, i wonder if you can explain to me the intention behind this bill. why does your organization feel that it's necessary?
>> sure. thanks. the arizona bill has a very simple premise that americans should be free to live and work according to their religious faith. arizona has had an act on our books since 1999, just like the federal government and many, many states. the arizona law senate bill 1062 simply updates and clarifies that law to ensure that people can use their restoration act rights whether or not the government is involved in the lawsuit. >> cathi, in the effort to qualify, it's muddied things. people could could say, would it not have the effect of allowing restaurants to deny serving gay patrons service or it could go against allowing anyone service, african-americans, women, pregnant people? what do you say to that? >> not at all. the fearmongering, irresponsible accusations being made on senate bill 1062, really, if they were going to happen, they would have
been happening for the last -- since 1999, since the mid-90s when the federal government passed religious freedom restoration act. the arizona bill simply makes one clarifying change to what has already been law. it also cot ifiess the test. it's about religious for freedom and nothing else. >> do you think the accusations against this bill are irresponsible or do you think there's a real problem here? >> of course there's a real problem here. if the bill weren't doing anything, it wouldn't have a need to update it. it's going to fling open discrimination not just to gay people but a woman who is pregnant out of wedlock, you don't get served in my business. we have public accommodation claws in this country. if you don't want to serve the business, don't open a business.
the first amendment guarantees that. when you open a business, you're saying, i want to serve the public. if you don't want to serve the public, don't go into that line of work. >> cathi, who gets to choose which religious beliefs are valid here? what's to stop someone banning a religion based on who wear as blue dress? where is the line? >> they have not happened under existing -- they haven't happened. in arizona, since 1999, we've had one case and it was ruled against the individual who was using his religious justification to smoke marijuana. there was a three-prong test to determine what would be a religious belief in air zone that that would uphold under our state law. we've taken that test and put it into the law. so there are incredible
safeguards in the law to protect individuals and, again, this goes back to under our first amendment foundational principle of our country is that americans should be free to live and work according to their religious faith. >> cathi, you can understand that there will be people who say in order to protect one group's freedom, we step on another group's freedom. that doesn't seem american. >> i suggest you read the bill for yourself. read the bill, the explanation and you'll see that this is simply protecting people of faith and to oppose this bill really is showing incredible hostility to religious beliefs. >> if i could just make this point here. religious freedom is a shield to protect your own rights. it's not a sword to lash out at others. legislation like this does. it take as very noble concept, religious freedom, and turn it is into a tool of oppression of other people and that's simply not right. that's an anti-american value
and i think bills like this are the dying last gast from people who cannot accept the fact that american society is changing. you look at the polls and you must be horrified when you're on the religious right to see the acceptance of same-sex marriages increasing and to realize that and instead react to take a noble concept, religious freedom, and turn it into a club to beat other people. if the court strikes down these laws, they will die because it's not what people want anymore. we are not a nation of bigots. >> cathi, i want you to clarify one ink this. you say the interpretation of this law is wrong. would a restaurant be able to ban a gay couple under this law and do you think they should be able to? >> this doesn't change what has been happening -- >> that is not my question. >> okay. what this law does is protect individuals, businesses, protects americans to be free to live out their religious faith
in their work. it means that the government cannot compel a business or individual -- >> the answer is yes? >> is that a yes? >> her answer is yes. i'll answer it for her because she's afraid to say it. she would be able to discriminate fundamentally american, fundamentally wrong. >> read the bill. >> cathi, it just let us understand the law. would a business -- if it was within their religious beliefs, if they say it's within their religious beliefs, would that restaurant be able to ban a gay couple? >> that has not happened under the many years that we've had this religious freedom act. there's no case in this country where we've had that scenario happen. >> but now that they pass the law, they would be able to do it. >> you know, read the bill. >> she's afraid to answer the question. they will be able to discriminate. and it's a shame. and it's fundamentally anti-american. >> cathi, one last word here? >> the opponents are showing
unbelievable hostility for religious beliefs. it matters in this country and we have the right to freely exercise our religious beliefs. >> religious beliefs matter in this country and also do individual freedoms to live their lives. that's what a lot of people are grappling with. cathi, thank you for joining us to share your side. robert, thank you. it's another thing that we were discussing, matters of faith are so subjective and intensely personal and it's a hard conversation for us to be having. you hope this doesn't devolve into hate mongering. >> the bill is on jan brewer's desk. we don't know if she will sign or not sign the bill. ahead, a noose tied around a statute at ole miss. we'll have that discussion next.
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welcome back. at this hour, a noose tied around a statue at ole miss is being investigated as a possible hate crime. the fbi is searching for vandals who desecrated the statue of james meredith who was the first black student to attend the university of mississippi. >> two men were seen at the statue early saturday morning and then heard them screaming racial slurs and then spotted the noose.
about 150 ole miss students gathered around to protest the vandalism. the alumni association is offering a reward to lead information to the arrest in the case. joining us from sacramento, california, director of the civil rights memorial center. good to have you with us this morning to talk about this. you know, i think a lot of people are saying, well, clearly still more work needs to be done. i think we often think that young people are doing better than our generation and past generations have done with race. maybe not the case? >> well, thank you so much for having me on, john and michaela. i appreciate it. no, it's not the case. we still have a long, long way to go. i think this despicable act is one in a long list of offensive events that have happened across college campuses across the country. i do applaud the university of
mississippi for immediately reputating this act and the fra tu turn teas have spoken out about this act. we have more work to do. >> james meredith, the statue, a hero of the civil rights movement, says we are not training our children like the bible says. they just do not know right from wrong. so how do we train them? >> well, i think that first and foremost we need to educate young people about civil rights history. i mean, it's obvious to me that the vandals do not at all understand what it meant for james meredith to integrate ole miss in 1962. and so when they attacked and desecrated the statue, probably thinking that it was a funny thing to do, have no appreciation for our nation's history.
so first and foremost, i think that we feed to educate about civil rights history. i think also schools should for first-year students and colleges and universities should do all they can to teach culture competency, because colleges it's the first time for lots of folks that they are living in integrated settings. and i don't think that there's enough done to help students live in diverse -- in a diverse setting. >> and we should point out, we don't know if the suspects were students, if they were young, if they were -- >> that's correct. >> we don't know that at this point. >> we made the assumption that this happened on a university property. >> that's correct. >> i hear you and a i think a lot of people hear you. how do we get it to not just feel like a history lesson and a lecture. how do we make it so that there is understanding, that it's not just a black history month conversation, that it is
something that people understand equality and respect for one another is a part of american life? >> well, that's interesting that you would say that michaela. i'm speaking to students at solano community college about black history month and this month's theme is civil rights in america. i've done presentations across the country and in europe. i know when i present the stories, the real stories of real people who made sacrifices to make this country a better place, i know that that is well-received by young people. so i think that it's something in the way that we tell the stories, how we integrate it into american history, and make it clear that this is everyone's history. and everyone can feel good about it and feel proud about how far the country has come. it's -- it's always the case that young people are appalled
to kind of -- to hear about, kind of in plain language, what happened to civil rights activists, what happened in this country and when they hear the stories about the freedom riders and realize they were young people like themselves, college students. so i think that we need to tell the story in a way that resonates with them. unfortunately, civil rights history is often taught exclusively about dr. king and mrs. parks. our teaching tolerance program has done a report recently on teaching the movement which shows that most students and i would say most adults, when you ask them about the civil rights movement, the totality of their knowledge is around dr. king and mrs. parks and they don't know those stories very well.
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thought they would be making. >> it is. >> joining us is alison kosik and dan ripple. alison, we are talking about a lot of money, money that this government is really going to use. >> exactly. so you mentioned that $184 million figure, michaela. that's the teax revenue frtax r through june of 2015 and that number is coming from the total sales of revenue, coming from more than $600 million during the same period of time. i mean, sit and think about that amount. it's really stunning when you think about it. and also, part of the reason you're seeing these revenues so high is because it's being taxed so big in colorado. 25% -- there's a 25% tax on marijuana. it's taxed three times during the profit, when marijuana is
pr produced, sold, and bought. >> that's incredible. the three times, at each point, that's a whole lot of money. that's what boggled both of our minds. i want to turn to dan ripple and talk about it. part of the legalization was to get this out of the shadows but legal pot is way more expensive than the illegal pot. essentially it's going to keep the black market alive. no? >> i think it's competitive with the black market price, too. but i think it's unrealistic to expect for the price of marijuana to stay where it is right now. part of the reason it's so expensive, the tax revenue is only part of it. there's also the novelty of this. this is the first market in the world where marijuana has been legal, taxed and regulated like alcohol. there's the cost of start-up businesses setting up business for the first time, there's a very strict regulatory program in colorado for this program and then there's been a shortage recently. as this program gears up, all of these businesses are just starting to grow their inventory. right now, supply is greater than demand and that's why you
see prices higher than they should be. >> dan, i understand they may not be able to make as much colorado is this team. but there are 48 other states that are looking at this. washington has legalized pot saying, this has got to be a great way to make money. no? >> yeah, for sure. you know, the original expectation in colorado was about 67 or $70 million, based on the first month of sales data, the governor is raising that expectation. so it's early but all signs point towards this being a success story and what we're focused on here in washington is making sure that federal policies have changed. alaska and oregon will be voting on initiatives probably later this year to regulate and tax marijuana. massachusetts, maybe nevada in 2016. there's a number of state legislatures. this is something that we expect to take off in washington and colorado but around the country. >> it's something that we can
overlook. alison kosik, thank you so much. dan riffle, thank you for join us us. ahead at this hour, pretty safe to say that most of us here in america take our drinking water for granted. thousands of people in one state have been scared to drink or otherwise use their water. could their fears spread to your area? that's ahead. plus, he's most famous for fending off soldiers with just 300 men. but what gerard butler is talking about now is even more heroic. that's next. , just had to stop y the house to grab a few things. you stopped by the house? uh-huh. yea. alright, whenever you get your stuff, run upstairs, get cleaned up for dinner. you leave the house in good shape? yea. yea, of course. ♪ [ sportscaster talking on tv ] last-second field go-- yea, sure ya did. [ male announcer ] introducing at&t digital life. personalized home security and automation. get professionally monitored security for just $29.99 a month. with limited availability in select markets. ♪
joining us is elizabeth cohen and eric olson. elizabeth, let me start with you and let me just say, we all drink water. this is important to so many people and what west virginia -- what happened in west virginia has a lot of people very, very concerned. so what are scientists trying to figure out right now? >> well, scientists today, an independent panel, john, had a press conference and they said, look, when they lifted the ban, when they told people it was okay to drink, they relied on science from the centers for disease control that said, below one part per million, unlikely to make anybody sick. and now these independent scientists are saying, we're going to take a look at that. we're going to take a look and see if that was the right level or not. it's interesting because when the ban lifts, they get all of the science right and everything is fine and then they say we want to go back and check that science, basically. >> so are folks drinking the water, cooking with it, washing with it?
>> i've talked to many, many people and i have not met one person who is actually drinking the tap water. and i'm going to show you a picture, michaela and john, that will speak a thousand words. so this is -- what we should be looking at is a water fountain that says "do not drink." you see these signs in a lot of places. this picture is from the county department of health. when you walk into the county health department, it says, don't drink the water from the water fountain. i think that speaks volume about how insecure and how untrusting people are of the water here. and i say, well, your officials say it's okay to drink and they say, we don't care what they say. we don't want to drink it. >> eric, what do you make of this? it's in west virginia but could this happen somewhere else? >> yeah, absolutely. we've done a study that shows cities across the country that are at risk for these kinds of disasters. and honestly, studies were done about ten years ago that showed that cities in all 50 states are at risk of contamination but very little has been done to
head off that problem. >> can we trust the officials? i think everybody saw, as elizabeth was saying, tests were done and there's this whole debate okay to drink versus safe to drink. there's a big gap and distance between those two things. it's frustrating. we're nothing without water. how do we know who to trust and when to trust them? >> well, this is a fundamental problem. one of the issues is, we don't have very much information about how toxic this chemical is. so that has given rise to a lot of skepticism among many independent scientists that this is safe, especially for some populations, like pregnant women. you want to make sure that if you have a baby, that that baby is not at risk. that's why actually the centers for disease control said, well, maybe pregnant women shouldn't be drinking this stuff as long as it's detectable in the water supply. >> elizabeth, what are the range of medical issues facing people there right now? >> you know, in the immediate
sense, what people -- i'm sorry. >> go ahead, elizabeth. >> okay. in the immediate sense, what we're hearing people are going to the emergency room for are things like rashes and nausea and headaches. but even when i spoke to the head of the county health department, he said, long-term we don't know what the cancer risks are. we don't know what the risks are for neurological issues. you know, there's so many question marks because, as we were just discussing, there's no human data on this chemical and even very limited animal data on this chemical. >> elizabeth cohen and eric olson, thank you so much for joining us to talk about this. it's a concern no matter where you live in the country. as we said, we're nothing without water. it's a fright for folks in west virginia. you may know gerard butler as the leader of the spartans. >> it's a good movie. >> gerard butler has a softer side. >> he really does. it's been great to see the work
that he's been doing with the cnn heroes charity that helps impoverished kids in liberia. >> please honor me in welcoming a fellow skocotsman. >> i was awe struck. since then we've become good friends. now here i am in liberia. >> so we've been driving for about an hour now. we're right in the heart of the country and we're passing little ki going to school where the feeding program is going on. >> it's me and magnus against everybody else. >> there's such a huge need here. there's so many children out of school, huge problems with malnutrition. we're providing daily meals so that children come to school. >> all right. who's next? >> here you go. >> it's a great partnership going on here. the parents, the elders,
children, volunteers. >> good, no? >> when cnn heroes happened, we were feeding just over 400,000 children. now we're well over 800,000 children every day. that's in the world. >> three plus four? >> seven. >> we've seen school enrollment increase. >> what is this? >> nine. >> a lot of them didn't eat at all in a day before they came to school. now they are motivated to come to school. they can focus. education is something that becomes like a possibility. when i gave the language to the cnn heroes award, i've been surrounded by the most amazing kids and it shows what one person can do when they show a bit of love. >> you know what is amazing, how happy did gerard butler look there? >> it's amazing when you work with people, with children, i've worked with a lot of at-risk kids. you think that you are helping
them. they do so much in return. it's a give and take relationship. >> he looked like he felt lucky to be there. >> every week we're going to be honoring a cnn hero. >> if you know someone who deserves this recognition, go to cnn heroes.com. do it now. at this hour, a guy takes the color pink to a whole new level. look at him. we'll tell you why facebook is blowing up on this one. could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance.s everybody knows that. well, did you know that when a tree falls in the forest and no one's around, it does make a sound? ohhh...ugh. geico. little help here. i need>>that's my geico digital insurance id card - gots all my pertinents on it and such.
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first lady michelle obama got some pretty big late-night laughs. she was jimmy fallon's guest. he has had quite the lineup. she didn't just sit on the couch, oh no. the first lady went all-out. it's hard to tell with those pig tails, but that's comedian will ferrell. they were dressed as teenage girls. of course, the first lady played herself. >> you know, instead of potato chips, a healthy alternative is kale chips. >> gross! >> not gross! in fact, i brought some with me. you both should try one. >> so good. >> and the best part, they're high in omega 3 fatty acids.
>> what? >> i'm deeply trouble. i'm deeply, deeply troubled by that. i have to tell you. it's one of those times i'm glad i go to bed at 7:30 at night. >> you missed it. she went down and got down -- they got their boogie on, because they're getting kids moving, getting people moving, making better choices eating. it was fun to watch her. >> a little political news to tell you about. hillary clinton, the gallup organization saying her favorability at 59%. lower than when secretary of state, but not dropping precipitously. other news in the hillary clinton world, senator john mccain saying in an interview he thought that if the election were held today, hillary clinton would be president. but this just in. you know what's not being held today? >> the election. >> exactly. >> but you know that people who make these decisions about whether she is running or not, likely her, paying attention to these polls.
>> no doubt. >> no doubt. at this hour, this question. how do you feel about pink facial hair? how do you feel about bikers? so how about pink facial hair on bikers? it sounds awesome already, right? but it's even more awesome than you think. take a look at this. this is steve betters, who lost a bet on the nfl playoffs. and that's why he started dying the beard. but he decided to take it even further than that. dye the beard to earn money for charity. betters promised to donate $1,000 to children's hospital in maine if he got 1,000 likes on facebook and he got a lot more than that. it turns out he's just as awesome as you think. >> steve betters joins us now from portland, maine. what a pleasure to see you. and boy, that is pink. would you do me a favor and give a tug on that beard so i know it's real? >> oh, it's real. >> oh, man. is there anything living in there? >> small vw bug.
>> no. i picked out a few things earlier, but i think that was from last night's supper. >> so steve, i've got to say, this is a wonderful thing. >> it really is. >> that you're doing. did you ever expect that it would get the reaction that it has? >> this is absolutely blowing me out of the water. it's beyond my every expectation. >> give us an idea of how many likes you've gotten, and how much money you've been able to raise. >> well, i tell you what. i started off with about 300 and something likes, and it has gone up within 11 days to 3,300 and something likes, i believe, right now. >> so you said if you got 1,000, you would give $1,000 to charity. are you going to go higher than 1,000? >> yeah, it was my camelot. if this thing had gone wry viral, and i didn't expect it,
but if it did, i was willing to donate $1,000 to the barbara bush children's hospital here in portland, maine. >> oh, you big softy. talk to me about pink. why was it pink that was chosen? >> well, i tell you what. the brothers at that i rode with, with the combat vets motorcycle association in bangor, had a bet if the patriots lost to the broncos, they were going to shave their heads. and it was minus 20 degrees down here in portland, and there was no way i was losing anymore hair. i said, i'll go ahead and dye the beard for them. and they wanted me to die it orange. for the broncos. >> that's a good look. >> huh? >> orange would be a good look. >> that's the broncos colors. >> that was the broncos' color and i really didn't want to wear a broncos' color. i would rather dye it pink. so -- and that's how i came to choose pink. it's just one of those colors,
and it's kind of kitchcatchy. >> steve, are you sure it grows out? >> it's going to be quite a look when it grows out. >> this is going to be fantastic. right now i'm wearing a washable dye. >> okay. >> it comes off with just soap and water. but since this thing has taken off, i think my wife has talked me into going permanent here. >> she likes it? >> she likes it! she likes it. and the only problem is that my son is getting married in may. >> oh. that's not one of their colors? >> no. i just don't want to upstage the bride. >> you never want to do that. >> you could imagine the bridesmaids' dresses though. at some point, there could be synergy there. >> steve betters, we salute you, appreciate what you're doing for kids and what your club is doing. and we love that you are wearing this boldly, my friend. thanks so much for the great work you're doing, and people keep on liking him. >> oh, absolutely. keep it going. thank you very much. >> have a great day.
>> you're thinking about it, aren't you? i think it would be a great look for you. i want to tell you a great example of people coming together to make a big difference. a 5-month-old baby stopped breathing on a busy miami highway. a woman sprang from her car screaming for help in the middle of backed-up traffic. apparently her nephew was turning blue. drivers responding to the woman's screams jumped from their cars. one of them was a pulitzer prize-winning photographer from the "miami herald." he flagged down a police officer, that officer aided another motorist in giving that little one cpr. we're told that little boy is in critical but stable condition today. he has some sort of respiratory issues, because he was born prematurely. but we wanted to share this. an act of kindness in an emergency kind of situation. a group of people potentially saving this little one's life. >> the kid is lucky and those people are wonderful. >> and auntsy breathing a sigh of relief. that's it for us at this hour. >> "legal view" starts right
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yelling and shouting at each other, deliberations gone wild in the michael dunn trial, ending in a deadlock on the most important charge. the youngest juror in the room tells cnn, those men and women in that room did their job. also this hour, driving down the freeway and her 5-month-old nephew suddenly stops breathing. when the unthinkable happens, her quick-thinking and little help from strangers saves the day. and a precious life. and cashing in big time on legalized marijuana. high -- i mean really, really high tax revenues burning a hole in colorado's pocket. so how soon will other states get in on the action?